by Ty Hardison

Vendors must plan before launching an eCommerce solution

We are just about halfway through January, and while many companies probably have a good head start on 2013 initiatives, it's likely there are still several in the planning stage. Before time starts to become a factor, it's important for businesses to properly orchestrate new strategies to enhance operations and, ultimately, improve profits this year.

As this blog has stated in the past, many B2B vendors are improving their business by implementing an eCommerce channel over the next 12 months. More and more companies are interested in buying online, so vendors that can provide that shopping experience will likely be more successful in 2013. However, launching this initiative requires a tremendous amount of planning and resources, particularly on the tech side. New payment solutions will likely have to be implemented, among a number of other B2B eCommerce tools.

An article in the online publication MultichannelMerchant lists the ways B2B providers should plan to diversify their ecosystem in 2013 and suggests technology analysis is of the utmost importance.

"A direct online sales program can be a major undertaking," writes Michael Chuma, the author of the article. "Engage the IT department early on to determine whether sufficient staff and budget resources exist. Work with the team to determine what vendors and technologies might be needed to supplement internal resources and sustain the effort."

These brainstorming sessions will likely result in the discovery that a B2B eCommerce platform will require a new payment gateway. Working with a B2B payments consultant can help vendors acquire this solution, as it will be important to do so in order for certain payments to be processed. Vendors will still want to process level 3 data with line-item detail, whether the payments are made online or off.

by Ty Hardison

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